The Springhaven Club's Thon triumphs in Tournament of Champions - The Golf Association of Philadelphia

Oct 02, 2009

The Springhaven Club’s Thon triumphs in Tournament of Champions

  CAPE MAY CT. HOUSE, N.J. – Rich Thon of The Springhaven Club will now enter the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s Senior Division with a 2009 trophy on his mantle.

  The Swarthmore, Pa. resident won the 52nd edition of the Association’s Tournament of Champions at a cool and windy Stone Harbor GC (par 72, 6,638 yards) Friday with a 2-over-par 74. Thon, 54, kept his ball in play and maintained pace with appealing putting surfaces.

  “I’ve got to say that the greens here are beautiful,” he said. “I had no anxiety today. You knew that if you hit a putt online, it would go in.”

  After carding a bogey on the strenuous, par 5, 532-yard No. 3, Thon recovered with a birdie on the next par 5 (No. 5, 506 yards). His tee shot found the right-side rough, but Thon later drilled a 52-degree wedge 100 yards and converted an uphill 15-footer.

  On No. 11, yet another monstrous par 5, Thon hammered his 3-wood 238 yards to 25-feet below the flagstick and two-putted for birdie. He played the rest of his round with one goal in mind.

  “Just hang on from there,” Thon said. “I thought I would have a chance if I came in at even-par.”

  Thon did hang on, as evident by a “miraculous” par on No. 15 (par 4, 386 yards). His approach 8-iron left him with a tricky lie in the left greenside bunker. With one leg in and one leg out, Thon chipped up to a few feet and saved par.

  Thon registered back-to-back bogeys on Nos. 16 (par 5, 500 yards) and 17 (par 3, 155 yards). On the latter, he hooked his 6-iron tee shot into the rough and failed to save par. In the end, though, both hiccups didn’t prove costly.

  Ultimately, Thon felt humbled by his achievement Friday.

  “This is a highlight for me,” he said.

  Thomas DiCinti of Links GC topped the Senior flight with a 2-over-par 74. The Voorhees, N.J. resident carded five birdies and seven bogeys.

  “It was an up-and-down round,” he said. “I hit the ball pretty well, for the most part. My tee shots were in good shape. My approaches to the green were great.”

  From 115 yards out on No. 2 (par 4, 364 yards), DiCinti, 60, stuck a GAP wedge to three feet. On the next hole, the par 5, 500-yard No.3, he three-putted from 20 feet above the flagstick for a bogey.

  On the next par 5 (No. 5, 480 yards), though, DiCinti reached the green in two strokes thanks to a 225-yard 3-wood that pushed through the wind. He then two-putted for birdie. DiCinti fired another birdie on No. 6 (par 4, 369 yards) after knocking his 8-iron 150 yards into the wind from a signature island fairway to five feet below the flagstick.

  On No. 11 (par 5, 470 yards), DiCinti smashed a 5-iron from 170 yards out to 40 feet and two-putted for birdie. He encountered trouble on the following hole, the par 3, 154-yard No. 13. DiCinti’s 8-iron landed in the water and he went on to double bogey. But DiCinti hopped back aboard the birdie train on No. 14 (par 4, 420 yards) after drilling a 56-degree wedge 80 yards into the wind to a few feet.

  DiCinti, who captured this year’s Senior Four-Ball Stroke Play alongside partner Robert Lodovici of Little Mill CC, considered the wind to be his toughest challenge throughout the day.

  “That’s the hardest thing mentally,” he said. “You always think that you have to hit it hard.”

  Open to current Member Club amateur champions, senior amateur champions and previous winners, the Tournament of Champions was initiated in 1962 in memory of Larry Malmed. The Association then accepted the event in 1984 after Al Porter, the tournament’s coordinator, was forced to retire due to illness. The Association also added a senior division in 1992.

Name Club Scores
Amateur Flight
Rich Thon The Springhaven Club 74
Peter Barron, III Stone Harbor Golf Club 75
Brian Rothaus Philmont Country Club 76
Rich Pruchnik West Chester Golf & Country Club 76
Ryan Jordan Medford Lakes Country Club 76
Michael Walker Wyncote Golf Club 77
Matt Bellah Radnor Valley Country Club 78
Vinny Alessi Penn Oaks Golf Club 78
Archie Struthers Greate Bay Country Club 79
Brian Herman Merchantville Country Club 79
Gary Daniels Applebrook Golf Club 79
Robert Bechtold Wyncote Golf Club 79
Jame Gillespie Wedgwood Country Club 80
Michael Carr Philadelphia Publinks GA 80
Joseph Roeder Links Golf Club 82
Richard Blash, Jr. Riverton Country Club 82
Andrew Blumberg Fieldstone Golf Club 83
Brian Skrip Cedarbrook Country Club 83
Christopher Thude Torresdale-Frankford Country Club 83
John Simone Philmont Country Club 83
Keith Cope Wildwood Golf & Country Club 83
Douglas Gregor Huntingdon Valley Country Club 84
Jeff Klagholz Applebrook Golf Club 85
Mark Coassolo Brookside C.C. of Allentown 86
Stephen McIntyre Honeybrook Golf Club 86
Tom Mastroni Sandy Run Country Club 86
Thomas O’Rourke Chester Valley Golf Club 88
Cameron Campbell McCall Golf & Country Club 89
Buddy Reed DuPont Country Club WD
Louis Giovi Mercer Oaks Golf Course NS
Thomas Gramigna Tavistock Country Club WD
Senior Flight
Thomas DiCinti Links Golf Club 74
Alan Van Horn Lu Lu Country Club 77
Bob Majczan Lookaway Golf Club 77
Michael Quinn Edgmont Country Club 77
William Lawler Fox Hill Country Club 78
Martin Klagholz Rolling Green Golf Club 79
Jon Mabry Moorestown Field Club 81
Michael Dougherty Huntingdon Valley Country Club 81
Alan Over Bent Creek Country Club 82
Dennis Fellona Merchantville Country Club 83
John Turner The Springhaven Club 83
Frank Polizzi Whitemarsh Valley Country Club 85
Robert Ockenfuss Indian Valley Country Club 85
Michael Harms Philadelphia Publinks GA 86
Neil McDermott Llanerch Country Club 86
Michael Sofranko Wyncote Golf Club 87
Edward Pappas, Sr. Rolling Green Golf Club 88
Ed Chylinski Chester Valley Golf Club 89
Richard Bourassa McCall Golf & Country Club 89
Robert Brooker Blue Bell Country Club 89
Joseph Martella Sandy Run Country Club 91
Rick Uetz Deerwood Country Club 92
Edward Purdy Wildwood Golf & Country Club 94
Joe Roynan North Hills Country Club 94
Glenn Davis Sand Barrens Golf Club 96
Richard Myslinski Mercer Oaks Golf Course 96
Tom Zeranski Burlington Country Club 98
Jerry Booz Honeybrook Golf Club 99
Jeffrey Brown West Chester Golf & Country Club WD
John Owens Tavistock Country Club WD
WD – withdrawal; NS – no show

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